In what could be considered as a major shock to Sandalwood fans, actor Chiranjeevi Sarja has passed away on Sunday, 7 June. He suffered a heart attack and breathed his last at the age of 39.

Chiranjeevi Sarja
Chiranjeevi Sarja dies after suffering heart attack at the age of 39.PR Handout

His Journey
Having born in the family of legendary producer Shakti Prasad, getting into film industry was not a difficult task for Chiranjeevi Sarja. His uncles Arjun Sarja and late Kishore Sarja took the responsibility of launching him and gave a good debut movie in the form of Vayuputra in 2009.

After the big debut, he consolidated his position with Dandam Dashagunam, which had created a lot of negative publicity before its release due to the producer and actress Ramya's issues. His next movie Varadhanayaka, which had Sudeep in a key role, made him a bankable star.

Thereafter, Chiru had many highs and lows, yet he remained relevant in the game despite so much of competition. His Aatagara, Aake and Amma I Love You were some of his memorable movies.

Sarja and Sudeep's Contribution
If his uncle Arjun Sarja played a great role in shaping his career in his initial days, it was Kiccha Sudeep who became his mentor in the next few years to give a boost to the budding actor's career. Out of affection, Kiccha had done a secondary fiddle in Varadhanayaka.

Chiranjeevi Sarja Passes Away
Chiranjeevi Sarja passes away.PR Handout

"Varadanayaka is a Chiranjeevi Sarja film, but I am a part of nearly 75% of it. Varadanayaka is my gift to my brother Chiru (Chiranjeevi), and my friend, Shankar Gowda. I accepted this role only for the two of them," Sudeep had told a daily ahead of the film's release then.

Giving details about his bonding with Chiranjeevi Sarja, he had said, "There is a strong bond of love and affection between us. I've known Chiru even before he began his career in the film industry. He's a regular visitor to my home. Even after he became an actor, he spends his free time hanging out with me and my friends at my place at times wrapping up only with a roadside chai in the wee hours of the morning. Over the past one year, we have both become passionate about bike rides. We often ride around the city at night. Both of us are gadget freaks and consult each other when there's a plan to buy something new."

Before his death, he was working on a few movies that include Ranam and Kshatriya.

Throughout his career, he was criticised for doing remakes instead of preferring original stories. His last release was Shivarjuna which failed to set the box office on fire.

Meghana Raj-Chiranjeevi Sarja engagement
Meghana Raj-Chiranjeevi Sarja.PR Handout

After years of courtship, Chiranjeevi got engaged to Meghana Raj in October 2017 and tied the knot in May 2018. They had celebrated their second wedding anniversary last month.

His equation with Brother
Chiru shared a fantastic bonding with his younger brother and actor Dhruva Sarja. The former was a kind of a mentor to the latter. Just a day before his death, he had shared their childhood photo. Their equation was like Rama-Lakshmana from the Hindu mythology Ramayana, as per their friends and relatives.